Hazelbury Bryan Primary School

A Brief History of Our School

During the first quarter of the 19th Century an enlightened local landowner called Mark Ansty bequeathed land and a small building in Coney Lane to the village, enabling the establishment of a school.

"For the instruction and benefit of the poor boys and girls born within or belonging to or residing within the parish, in reading, writing, casting accounts and needlework or in such knowledge in every respect as shall be thought proper to such persons in their station of life for a term of 1000 years" - thus reads a excerpt from the original bequest.

The school is lucky to have many documents and an early logbook dating from 1864, which makes fascinating reading.

At the turn of this century the influential Rector, the Reverend Richard Burden, built a new school for the village on the present site. During and after the building, the children went to a Mrs. Stovey who lived in an extremely small, low cottage with mud walls. It had only two rooms and was in a terrible condition.

When the children could "spell a little and do a small sum in addition" they were sent to Reverend Burden's larger school.

In 1915 the school admitted its youngest pupil, Sydney Cave, aged 3. (Today we welcome very young children once again in the lively and active Pre-School as part of our Foundation base.)

1939 saw children from Blackfriars LCC School sharing facilities in a morning/afternoon split as part of the evacuation arrangements for London. Hot school meals were first served in 1941, the food being brought to the school in heated containers. During 1948 the school changed from an all-age village school to a Primary school with the older children going to Sturminster Newton.

The first television in the village was installed in the schoolhouse in 1952!Whilst the school was being enlarged a 13th Century sword was discovered and is now proudly displayed in the school lobby.

In 1971 the P.T.A. and local business funded and assisted in the building of our swimming pool. During 1999 the P.T.A. added heating to the pool and began a programme of refurbishment, which was completed in 2000.

A new classroom was opened in 1998; the new facilities have allowed our teachers to operate a fourclass system, ensuring that our children enjoy education in modern surroundings with modest class sizes. This promotes a high level of personal interaction between teachers and children. The school has a new Computer suite with broadband Internet connection and interactive white boards in each classroom.

We now have a new Hall, level access for wheelchair users, a new entrance lobby and two refurbished classrooms. In September 2010, our second new classroom was completed to give us valuable extra space and to allow for the expansion of the Foundation Base. We have had two OFSTED visits in the last three years. Firstly we were described as a ôrapidly improving school where teaching and learning are a strength. Secondly our Foundation base and Out of school Hours care provision were also inspected, with no notice, and were found to be of a good standard. We have a breakfast club established and also offer full-time care for children, in term time. We are all very excited about the future here and I am sure that the Reverend Burden would approve of our efforts to continue his work.